Ditching the Dream by Isabelle Peterson

October 20, 2013 Adrienne's Reviews, Reviews 0 ★★★

This book may be unsuitable for readers under 17 years of age due to sexual content, drug and alcohol use, suicide, and/or violence.
Ditching the Dream by Isabelle Petersonthree-stars
Ditching the Dream by Isabelle Peterson
on October 14, 2013
Genres: Adult Fiction, Erotica
Pages: 335
Format: eBook
Feeling dead in her marriage of 22 years, Elizabeth Fairchild, in her young forties, ditches the dream of her seemingly perfect life with her husband in search of who she really is.

She had gone from her parents' house to her husband's home and never learned to stand on her own two feet. Her husband, Greg, isn't abusive or cruel, just rather neglectful. Her kids are all out of the house, off to college. Feeling that not much is left for her at home, she leaves her comfortable life in Napa Valley, California in search of her inner fire in New York City. She didn't leave to find another man, but soon finds herself involved with two very different men: Jack Stevens and Kevin Parker.

Jack is older than Elizabeth by 9 years. He has heart-stopping good looks, is wildly successful, and very much in control of everything around him - especially Elizabeth.

Kevin is younger, by 14 years. He is carefree, has a heart of 24k gold, is a middle school Spanish teacher, and is quite okay with Elizabeth taking the reins.

Which dream is really Elizabeth's? Her quiet life in Napa? Or her wild ways in New York?

WARNING: EROTIC ROMANCE... This book contains subject material of an adult nature intended for readers of 18 years old and older. In these pages you will find graphic language and sexual encounters that some readers might disagree with: regular sex, BDSM, oral, anal and threesomes. You’ve been warned. Happy reading!

DISCLAIMER: this is a work of FICTION. It doesn't represent my life, or the lives of anyone I know.

line_dividerI can’t NOT write this review from the perspective of a married woman.  I desperately wanted to stay neutral.  But I couldn’t and the more I got into the story the more my opinions changed.

I was totally hooked after reading the first line of the synopsis.

Feeling dead in her marriage of 22 years, Elizabeth Fairchild, in her young forties, ditches the dream of her seemingly perfect life with her husband in search of who she really is.


Let’s get real here for a minute.  Who hasn’t thought about getting up and walking away?  Be honest.  Just once you know you’ve thought about what it would be like.  Maybe you married young like Elizabeth.  Maybe you didn’t get to party and go clubbing.  Maybe you didn’t date a whole lot.  Maybe you feel like you missed out on something.  Then again maybe you didn’t, maybe you married a little later in life.  You got all the partying out of your system and you were ready to settle down.  Whatever the case may be, I think we’ve all pondered the what if’s.

Before I go any further let me share a little of my background if I may.

My husband and I met in Germany.  We were 16 and our fathers were in the Army.  We became best friends.  We graduated and he went one direction with his family and I went the other.  We stayed friends but it was long distance, we visited each other when we could.  Fast forward 7 years, things happen and we finally tell each other how we feel.  2 years later we get married at the age of 28.  That was 15 years ago and I married my best friend.  I’m very happy.  Today and even yesterday I was happy.  But the reality is that I’m not always happy and I don’t think he is either.  Marriage isn’t easy and we don’t always end up with the white picket fence and 2.2 kids, dog, and minivan.  There are many ups and downs in a marriage, people grow and change.  Sometimes we get stuck in a rut and we don’t know how to get out of it.  Keep a marriage fresh and exciting and hot is a lot of work.

Yet there are still times, albeit infrequent, when I think about what it would be like if we weren’t married or if we had waited longer or if I walked away right now could I survive?  We don’t get married thinking “I’m going to divorce this person one day”.  No we have dreams and aspirations of what marriage is like.  For some of us I’m sure those dreams come true.  For some of us it doesn’t.  I think for a lot of us it’s a little of both.

Okay so my thoughts on this story.  While I understood and sympathized with the things that Elizabeth was feeling, I found it very selfish and extremely disrespectful in the way she handled it.  She was married for 22 years, yet she writes a Dear John letter and leaves while her husband is at work?  Not only does she leave but she flies 3,000 miles away and doesn’t tell anyone?  She has family and friends and 3 kids!  Not only does she not tell anyone she doesn’t answer any phone calls or reply to text msgs.


So you’re mad, upset, whatever at your husband and your situation and you decide you’re going to leave.  I get it.  But after 22 years doesn’t he at least deserve the respect to at a minimum have a conversation with you about it?  I mean she said she loved him.  She even told him he was perfect.  How in the eff do you go from I love him and he did nothing wrong in our marriage except neglect me, to I’m leaving and flying 3,000 miles away to “find myself”?  On top of that, she shuffled the letter in the mail so that he would have to look for it.  Or maybe stumble upon it.

Stop right there.

This man texted and called her repeatedly when he realized she wasn’t responding he began to worry.  I would too!!!  For all he knew she could have been in an accident or who knows what.  Maybe she had a heart attack and dropped dead doing dishes!!  Would you go home and look at the mail??  OMG of course you wouldn’t!!  You’d be frantic.  You’d be calling everyone and their mother.  You’d be trying to retrace her steps.  You’d be combing the streets.  You’d be pulling your hair out.


Okay *deep breath* even if we could get past this part and say what she did was fine and normal (which it wasn’t).  Now she’s in NYC.  She doesn’t even have a hotel reservation and doesn’t know where to tell the taxi to take her.  She comes across as dumb not naive.  She’s a 40 something year old woman with 3 kids in college.  She’s well educated and in my opinion has no excuse to not act like an intelligent woman.  She didn’t have any reason NOT to know where she was going to go.  I could see if her husband abused her or was unfaithful.  Maybe her foundation was so shaken she just ran.  But she didn’t she just packed a bag and walked away.  She didn’t turn to family or friends.  No she went to freaking New York City.

Then she tries to find a job.  Which she does, as a bartender (whatever) and she meets a man whom she’s attracted to (of course).  Then she goes to her apartment building and meets another man, whom she’s attracted to (of course).  This man is younger, the first guy older.  They both show her attention.  She’s desperate for attention since hubby back home hasn’t been attentive to her needs.  But she tries to convince us readers that she’s not out to have an affair.  Nope she’s there to find herself and see if she can make it on her own.


Then she has this conversation with hubby and he says you know what Elizabeth if you need to sow your wild oats go ahead.  Just come home to me.

What does she do?

Yep she sows the wild oats.  With the older guy and the younger guy.

Yes the sex is hot in the book.

Yes these guys are gorgeous and totally different and appealing.

No it’s not okay.

I don’t think it’s fair to take what her husband said at face value.  He was grasping at straws saying whatever he had to say to get her home.  He loves her.  At least he believes he does.  But when he sees the changes shes made for himself he’s not sure what to think.  I don’t blame him.  In 2 weeks Elizabeth totally transformed.  Not just the way she looked but the way she acted.  Now don’t get me wrong, hubby has neglected her.  He too is selfish and set in his ways and like so many other men just lost sight of how wonderful and sexy his wife is.  Well maybe he didn’t lose sight of it as much as he just didn’t tell her enough or show her enough.  He just reminded me of so many men.  Work is more important.  He wants dinner cooked every night and waiting for him when he gets home.  You know men are so simple and creatures of habit.  I honestly believe they don’t even realize what they’re doing half the time when it comes to relating to us women.  So yes Elizabeth was justified in her feelings about how things had gone.  He could have and should have been more attentive.  He should have showed her how much he appreciated her.

But I don’t know maybe try counseling before you up and fly 3,000 miles away!!!!

Look, the writing in this book is good.  I have no issues with the writing.  My issue is with the plot and the characters.  I don’t think it’s in any way realistic and I don’t think all non-fiction books need to be.  However, when it comes to marriage and relationships and the way people respond or react there needs to be something we can grab on to and relate to.  This story isn’t listed as Erotic Fantasy.  Maybe I’m totally off base.  I’ve seen glowing reviews for this book and I’m thrilled that others liked it so much.

For me, as a married mother of three, I found it to be a story about a selfish, disrespectful woman who was unhappy at home and in 2 weeks time, had an affair with 2 men, justified it in her head and then went home with the hopes that she could change her husband.

*Copy kindly provided by the author in exchange for an honest review*


About Isabelle Peterson

I started out as a screenwriter – and still am – but after i started Fictional Boyfriends on Facebook, a story started growing in my mind.. one to be told in a book.

I am lucky to have an adoring husband & two extremely talented and bright teens & a scrumptious 9 pound dog. They are all so super supportive of all my writing and I couldn’t do it without them.

I live about an hour from New York City.

Rating Report
Overall: 3.1

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